France fights spreading wildfires as heatwave fries Europe

France has scrambled more water-bombing planes and hundreds more firefighters to combat spreading wildfires that were being fed by hot swirling winds from a searing heat wave broiling much of Europe.

ith winds changing direction, authorities in south-western France announced plans to evacuate more towns and move out 3,500 people at risk of finding themselves in the path of the flames.


A wildfire near Landiras, south-western France (SDIS 33 via AP)

Three additional water-bombing planes were joining six others already making repeated runs over the flames and dense clouds of smoke, the French interior ministry said.

It added that more than 200 reinforcements were also being added to the 1,500-strong force of firefighters battling night and day to contain the blazes which are devastating the Gironde region’s tinder-dry pine forests and sending burning embers into the air, spreading the flames even further.

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